Time ripe to tackle lopsided demographic structure
KUWAIT CITY, May 20: The Federation of Kuwaiti Engineering Offices and Consulting Firms called on the government to take advantage of the current conditions and start taking more serious steps in addressing the lopsided demographic structure issue, while cooperating with the private sector to play a constructive role in achieving the development that Kuwait seeks in order to preserve capabilities of its people now and in the future, reports Al-Seyassah daily.
In a press statement, President of the federation Eng Bader Al-Salman said he is proud of the decisions announced by Minister of State for Municipality Affairs Eng Walid Al-Jassem, Director General of Kuwait Municipality Eng Ahmad Al-Manfuhi, Minister of Oil, Electricity and Water Dr Khaled Al- Fadil and CEO of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) Eng Hashem Hashem to stop direct hiring of non-Kuwaitis and start eliminating non-Kuwaiti labor.
This is in addition to the development of mechanization and implementation of e-business and contracting in cooperation with the private sector, he revealed. The circumstances that Kuwait and other countries are going through include economic stagnation, low oil prices and slow movement of the economic wheel. People are able to give and take responsibility.
This is a rare opportunity to amend the demographic structure, develop administrative systems based on technology and raise production rates, he asserted. He stressed “it is high time for the government, headed by His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al- Khalid Al-Sabah and our brothers and sisters, to take courageous steps and implement decisions to amend the demographic structure and stop total dependence on the private sector. They should stop any project, study, advice or contracting by companies other than local companies registered in the Central Agency for Public Tenders (CAPT). In the event that global expertise is not available locally, the private sector is required to contract with foreign offices, companies and expertise. The government agencies should be prevented from carrying out any consulting work concerning studies, supervision or designs or contracting.”
Al-Salman explained such a step will also limit the use of non-Kuwaiti consultants and reduce project and government operating expenses, as government agencies will activate administrative systems and fully utilize technology.
“The role of State agencies is to monitor and evaluate private sector businesses. We hope Minister of Public Works and Minister of State for Housing Affairs Dr Rana Al Faris, whom we know to be keen on involving serious and responsible private firms in consulting and local contracting, will prohibit any consulting projects or contracting except for private companies registered in CAPT. She should also issue instructions that its agencies should not carry out any studies, designs and supervision of contracts, which should be handled only by eligible Kuwaiti engineering offices and local contracting companies,” he suggested.